Trenton, N.J., Monday, January 13, 2014: At the very last moment, the NJ State Senate took up and passed Assembly Bill 3898 (an identical version of S2632, introduced by Senator Bob Smith at the beginning of 2013). In an associated statement, the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee notes that “this bill provides a mechanism for the financing, by municipalities, of water conservation, storm shelter construction, and flood and hurricane resistance projects, and expands the “clean energy special assessment,” established in current law pursuant to P.L.2011, c.187 (N.J.S.A.40:56-1.4 et al.), into the “clean energy and storm resistance special assessment.”
The bill now heads to the Governor’s office for approval.
If signed into law, the Act — “concerning the financing of water conservation, storm shelter construction, and flood and hurricane resistance projects, and amending P.L.1960, c.183 and P.L.2011, c.187” — not only expands the range of improvements that can be financed through PACE but also further clarifies the administration of PACE programs and explicitly allows for private financing (as well as the municipal or county improvement authority bonds provided for in the original legislation).
In our view, this new piece of legislation will unlock an even larger flow of private funding into the long term recovery, rebuilding, and retooling of New Jersey’s built environment to meet the challenges of the 21st century. Stay tuned for further developments.